District aces cling on for huge win in cup classic

Result secures a place in the semi-finals of the Kay Trophy

Thursday, 27th January — By Steve Barnett

Islington dsitrict team

Islington’s Primary Schools District side are in the Kay Trophy semi-finals

HIGHGATE hosted “a massive six-pointer” on Saturday as primary school footballers showcased their skills and composure during a titanic showdown in the group stages of the Kay Trophy.

Islington’s Primary Schools District team went into their final group game against Tower Hamlets at St Aloysius Playing Fields knowing that only a win would guarantee them a spot in the semi-finals.

A chilly morning in Hurst Avenue was quickly forgotten when the home side took the lead in unlikely circumstances as Thomas O’Keefe’s inswinging corner found its way straight into the back of the net.

Tower Hamlets slowly made inroads but Islington goalkeeper Taylor Wain was secure in his handling, making a couple of crucial saves when called upon.

Islington were equally threatening, hitting the woodwork twice, as well as testing the goalkeeper with some long-range efforts. Dominating the midfield and looking dangerous on the attack, Islington almost doubled their advantage early in the second half when Kash Thompson forced another save.

Noah Odinma then went through one-on-one and looked certain to score before being upended by the keeper, leaving the Islington supporters calling for a penalty – waved away by the referee.

Within minutes the nerves were seemingly settled when Odinma got the goal his performance deserved, tapping in from close range following a goalmouth scramble.

But such big games are rarely settled smoothly, and with five minutes remaining Tower Hamlets reduced the arrears to set up a nervous finale.

Thanks to some solid defending from the whole team, Islington managed to cling on for a 2-1 victory, and with it a place in the final four.

With their semi-final opponents still unknown, delighted Islington coach Michael Peet said: “I thought from the first whistle the boys applied themselves well.

“We were compact and looked dangerous every time we attacked.

“The whole squad played their part and the boys followed the game plan we set out. In hindsight the scoreline was probably not a fair reflection on the game, as I thought we should have scored three or four goals, but it’s enough to send us through and that was the aim of today.”

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